The Oppie Koppie Creche, Vuya Foundation early childhood facility, in Prince Alfred Hamlet, near Ceres, hosted its 3rd market/social in August.
In May of this year the Vuya Foundation's COO, Dez Jansen, embarked on a mission abroad to spread the word about the great work that the Vuya Foundation is doing. Dez, using his contacts as the past president of the Pinelands Rotary Club, managed to contact fellow Rotary members in the maple-leafed country of Canada to coordinate a series of presentations.
Upon arrival guests were met with a number of traditional African songs performed by the Zimasa Primary school choir. The festivities were led by renowned MC Andre du Toit while Andre Petersen, Vuya Foundation's very own jazz piano genius, performed for the audience with his band. His wife Chantal was along-side him on stage playing double bass.
Dez is the current Chief Operating Officer of the Vuya Foundation. He started his career in the electrical industry and behgan his own company in 1994. Dez Jansen Electrical quickly expanded into a multi-faceted construction company and after having studied project management in 2001, Dez was able to expand on the company to create Dez Jansen Projects - a project management company. In 2008 Dez moved into the commercial properly sales and sleasing industry. Since his move to the Vuya Foundation in 2012 he has taken over the project management of the office and the logistical aspects of the multiple projects that the Vuya Foundation runs. Dez Oversees all business functions of the Oppie Koppie creche and is our on-site advisor for all matters technical, operational and logistic.
Dez has been an invested Rotary Club member since 2005. He was appointed President of the Pinelands Rotary Club in Cape Town (District 9350) in 2001 and was the past chairman of the Rotary Youth Exchange. He is passionate about what he does for the community and what the community can do for others.
Saturday the 7th of December was a monumental day for some of the children at the Oppie Koppie crèche in Prince Alfred Hamlet, Ceres. On this day, both the Christmas celebration and the graduation ceremony of the children going to Grade-R were celebrated. All in all, 34 bright young minds received their certificates to commemorate this achievement. Each age group had their time in the spot-light to perform a song and dance routine as proud parents watched with hearts full of joy. All 34 children stood as proud as punch in front of the stage in full graduation gown with certificate in hand. The power of this moment was understated yet undeniable.
Ezrick came to the attention of the Vuya Foundation for his excellence and passion in Karate. In September 2012, the Vuya Foundation, recognizing Ezrick’s ambition and determination, assisted him in traveling to Tokyo, Japan as part of the Japanese Cultural Exchange program. Despite having a broken finger, he succeeded in obtaining his second black belt at the headquarters of Goju Kai and was the only South African to return with a first place trophy for the Kata. All of these achievements were awarded in front of the strictest of judges – headed by the legendary Yamaguchi family - as Japan is home to these martial arts. All of this is testament to how tremendous Ezrick’s performance was!
Ezrick is currently finishing his matric year at McGregor high school near Ceres and hopes to go into either sports management or sports recreational science. He is currently a 3rd Dan black belt and a dream of his is to open his own dojo when he finishes his studies. The next major competition for Ezrick is the 6th Karate-Do Goju Kai World Championship in India which takes place in December 2013. We wish Ezrick the best of luck in his match-ups and look forward to celebrating many trophies when he returns.
Following the great success of the Winter market at the Oppie Koppie crèche in July the Vuya Foundation decided to host a Spring market to celebrate the turn of the season.
The market kicked off on the morning of Saturday 12th October 2013 and once again, the kids scrambled straight to the jumping castle! However this time the Vuya Foundation was prepared and every child had a chance to jump to their heart’s content. The parents were also swept up in the electricity of the event while they perused the clothing items and other goods for sale. Sticking to a working recipe, the smell of freshly cooked chips and hotdogs filled the air. There were also sweets and cakes available for purchase as well as gift hampers containing many essential household goods.
The most exciting turn of events however was when a real-life dance competition broke out spontaneously amongst the children to the beats of local DJ Harry. A circle was formed and two competitors stepped forward to showcased their freshest moves…and boy were there moves! To say that the children of Oppie Koppie have talent is an understatement. Some dancers were taken by surprise and the limelight proved too scary, but still remained on the periphery of the circle while others could not get enough of the crowd and adoration.
The festivities came to an end slightly earlier than the pervious market due the weather but all the children and the parents had a fun day. A special thank you goes out to Pinelands Rotary Club, Debbie Bessick and her team at Chevron, Tony Cochrane at Chimney Bakery and Ikapa for their donations of clothes and other generous offerings. A special thanks also goes out to all those who submitted cash donations.
The story of Oppie Koppie Kindergarden was birthed out of the realisation of a drastic need and our strong desire to meet that need.
When Vuya Foundation came to know of Henry he was a student in the Ceres Secondary School. He stayed in the school hostel during the week and was to return home on weekends.